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Process Engineering Intern
About the placement/internship

Why did you decide to do a placement/internship?

I was really keen to gain experience to assist in my year in industry applications. Also wanted to fill my Summer with something which was personally very interesting- rather than just a normal Summer job.

How did you find your placement/internship?

Speculative application

Application process

I emailed my CV and covering letter to a senior member of staff that my mum's friend had the email for. This was passed to the head of engineering at Seqirus. After this, I had an informal telephone "interview" and was later invited on site to have an interview.

Main responsibilities

-Writing and planning method statements for planned works. A method statement will describe valve movements and positions to isolate a system, in order to complete work on it, for example.
-Investigations into reported system failings.
-Planning and pitching changes to an Engineering Change Review Council.

Typical day

A typical day would vary. If I was working on a major investigation, the day would depend on what was uncovered that day. It may involve: contacting suppliers and using the Siemens SIMATIC PCS7 system which is the system which controls automation on site. Here I would have access to recorded data from transmitters, such as pressure, pH and temperature. A day may also involve risk assessment and preventative problem analysis meetings.

What did I enjoy about my placement/internship?

The people and friendly culture at Seqirus but equally the fact that the work is really fast paced and everything is done with a sense of urgency.

Challenging aspects

The fact that I was only there for such a small period of time (in the scheme of things) meant I didn't have access to certain files or areas of the building. This was also frustrating as in terms of project planning, I will be unable to see through the plans I have put in place as they will be getting implemented after I leave.

Did you use any skills learned from your course?

Not really! What struck me most was how different it was to anything I have done on my course. There are next to no calculations because nothing is designed by hand- it is all done on industry standards. If anything just terminology, for example knowing names of valve types etc was the most helpful skill taken from my course.

Has your time on placement influenced your future career choice?

Yes, definitely. I don't think I really had any idea what a professional engineer did before my placement despite researching and going to career fairs. The only way to learn is to go and do it for yourself.

Advice to students

My piece of advice to students

This was the final placement I applied to having been refused from the formal placement schemes - so don't give up even if you are still applying in May (which I was). I also wouldn't just apply for placements because it's a big name company who will look good on your CV, look for places that really get you excited - it makes 6am get ups a lot easier.

Form completed: 11 Sep 2018

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